Holy Cross Parish has been an active presence in Deerfield and the surrounding area for
80 years. As of 2011, the number of registered and active parishioners includes 1,209
families with a total of 3876 individuals. The total number of registered parishioners
(active and inactive) includes 1,844 families with a total of 4155 individuals.
Holy Cross Parish includes an active Day School which includes grades K-8 and a
Religious Education program. The registration for current year for the Day School
includes 236 students. In addition, registration for the current year Religious Education
program is 270 students (pre-K to grade 8).
The number of newly registered families in the past two years includes 44 families in
2010 and 51 in 2011. An extensive expansion and renovation of the church was
completed in 2005.
The First Years of Holy Cross and How the Parish Was Formed in 1929
|The Ender living room, Site of the first Catholic Mass in Deerfield
Symbolically, the Catholic Church in Deerfield was born on a site that was the highest point in South Lake County.
Thirty years after the U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey made a topographical survey of the forested land from this point for the railroad in 1871, John C. Ender brought his Deerfield bride, Catherine Horenberger back to town from Chicago with their family. He purchased 40 acres of land and using the oaks hewn from it, built "Claramount," the handsome, chalet-inspired house on the hill that still stands facing Waukegan Road, a former Indian trail.
In 1903, Deerfield was incorporated as a village with Mr. Ender the first village president, serving for 12 years. At this time, Deerfield Catholics attended Mass and received the Sacraments at either St. Patrick's Church on Everett in West Lake Forest or Immaculate Conception Church in Highland Park. Reverend J. D. O'Neill, D.D., pastor of Immaculate Conception Church, started weekly Catechism classes that were held in the Deerfield Town Hall in the Fall of 1908.
Purchased by the parish in 1956, this historic house, renovated throughout in 1957, housed the seven Sisters of Loretto: Sister Norbertina, principal of Holy Cross School, and Sisters Anna Marie, Evangeline, Fidelia, Josephine, teachers; Sister Mary Raymond, music teacher; and Sister Margaret Catherine, housekeeper.
Read more about the changes at Holy Cross Parish throughout the years:
1909 | 1910 - 1935 | 1936 - 1949 | 1950 - 1961 | and more to come....